Talks and Poster Presentations (with Proceedings-Entry):

P. Smejkal, M. Di Angelo:
"Informatics Classes in Austria´s Lower Secondary Schools - a Survey";
Talk: ISSEP2011, Bratislava; 2011-10-26 - 2011-10-29; in: "Informatics in Schools: Situation, Evolution and Perspectives", D. Bezakova, I. Kalas (ed.); (2011), ISBN: 978-80-89186-90-7; 37.

English abstract:
At present, the curriculum for Austria's lower secondary schools does not comprise informatics as a subject. This unfortunate situation led to a wide range of informatics classes both, optional and mandatory, at the lower secondary level, that were established solely through the initiative of the respective schools. These classes are offered in addition to the regular curriculum, which is enabled by the (small) autonomous space for curriculum design that the ministry grants its schools.
In this work we present the current status of offers for informatics classes in Austria´s lower secondary schools. In particular, we are interested in what kind of topics are offered, how numerous those offers are, and what the legal frame for this outside of curriculum classes is. This study is based on data that was collected from the schools in June-September 2010.
Results show that in fact a large number of schools at the lower secondary level use their autonomous curriculum design space for Informatics classes, be it as obligatory offers or electives. There were only a few schools which did not offer any informatics classes at all (8.9% Gymnasien, 25.2% Hauptschulen). Averaging over all of Austria, obligatory informatics classes can be found at 53.4% of the lower secondary schools, while informatics electives are offered at 47.3% of them.
These school initiatives are very laudable and welcome as they try to fill the gap between society´s needs and the ministry´s (non-)regulation. Still this cannot guarantee a sound informatics education. On the lower secondary level, rooting of computer skills in the curriculum is still missing and binding informatics education standards are lacking. Despite all efforts, the current situation leads to a disastrous heterogeneity in the pupils´ informatics knowledge at the end of the lower secondary level, which the upper secondary schools have to fight, inevitably.

Informatics classes, lower secondary school, survey

Electronic version of the publication:

Created from the Publication Database of the Vienna University of Technology.